Douglass, discrimination on board the Cambria

May 14, 1847

Several articles tell the story and comment on “A British Bow to An American Prejudice”.

Douglass was denied his “just rights and privileges on board of the British steamer Cambria, on her recent voyage from Liverpool to Boston.   He was “told that, being black, he must not occupy the berth he had purchased, nor enter the saloon, nor mix with the other passengers, nor eat his meals in company; but must consider himself throughout the voyage as un approachable Pariah! Mark this; the people had taken his money.  Mr. Frederick Douglass’s bank notes were not black. They took his money, as though he were a Christian, and then treated him like a dog. …. Mr. Douglass could and did pay — his money was as good as any white’s.  …..There is no aristocracy in bank notes. The whites and the blacks rub shoulders, when once they are in the strong box of the steam company. But Mr. Frederick Douglass must not occupy his berth like a Christian – must not rub shoulders with whites on board the Cambria  …… be his abilities what they may, there can be nothing white about him – but his bank notes.”

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